By David Meade
After three years of EMS services being provided by Medshore Ambulance Service, rescue squad services for the Williamston area are being put out for bids.
For the last several years, Anderson County officials have been looking at EMS contracts and services and even considering a countywide EMS service.
During the Williamston Town Council meeting Monday, Medshore Ambulance General Manager Josh Shore spoke to Council about the Williamston EMS contract. Shore said this is the third year of providing EMS services in the Williamston area.
“We enjoy the community feel you have here in Williamston,” Shore added that Medshore has donated “a lot of time” to cover events and activities.
He then addressed rumors about Medshore leaving, which he said is “totally untrue”.
In response to calls about a truck not being at the Williamston headquarters, Shore said that employees are parking inside where they can secure the vehicles.
Shore said there are two Medshore units stationed in Williamston, a primary and a spare.
He also stated the county is sending out a request for proposals RFP for the city of Williamston. He said that Medshore plans to put in for the bid and that there is a 60 day extension of the contract to provide EMS service.
According to Shore, Medshore provides 120 to 130 transports each month and responds to 160-180 calls in the area.
He reported that staffing had gone from 12 hour shifts back to 24 hour shifts, which he said has helped staffing and response times, which he said have improved.
He also said that a Medshore dispatcher is now assisting with the county EMS dispatching.
Councilman Rockey Burgess questioned Shore about whether there was a contract currently in place to provide the service in Williamston and asked about an incident in which Burgess said that the Williamston area was without EMS for a period of time while they were on another call outside the area.
Shore said he wasn’t aware of the incident and that Medshore was providing EMS coverage for the area.
In old business, Council unanimously approved second reading on a change in the zoning map for town property on Mill Street from Industrial (I) to Industrial Park (I-2).
Council also approved a change for 9 South Academy St. Based on a recommendation from the Planning Commission, the property was rezoned frm Single Family and Duplex Residential (R-3) to Residential/Commercial (R-3). The property has road frontage on Academy and Hill St.
Councilman Tony Hagood was not present for the meeting.
Councilman Burgess made a motion to go into executive session with the fire chief to discuss the EMS contract situation. The executive session lasted approximately 30 minutes.
Upon returning to regular session, Mayor Durham said a new business called Armory Fitness is expected to open in September. The twentyfour-seven fitness center will have a full array of fitness equipment and offer yoga classes, he said.
The town is currently updating the building for commercial use, according to the mayor.
Durham also announced that a Party in the Park event will be held on August 4 featuring the Eric Scott Band. The music event will be held on the ballfields behind the Municipal Center.
The Spring Water Festival will be held on the fourth weekend of August in Mineral Spring Park